If the measure of a musical man is the A-list roster of artists featured on his tribute album, consider John Anderson a bar above the rest. John’s upcoming album, Something Borrowed, Something New: A Tribute to John Anderson, is a star-studded 13-song affair, to say the least. Eric Church (“Mississippi Moon”), Sturgill Simpson (“When It Comes to You”), Tyler Childers (“Shoot Low Sheriff”), Luke Combs (“Seminole Wind”), the late John Prine (“1959”), Jamey Johnson (“I’m Just an Old Chunk of Coal”), Ashley McBryde (“Straight Tequila Night”), and more lend their vocal chops to the project.
“Listening to everybody do their own takes on the songs shows how the songs really come through,” says John Anderson. “And I thought to myself, ‘You might have been young and foolish back then, but you sure did pick some good songs.’ It’s very gratifying to know that some things really do not change, and a great country song remains a great country song. Any one person on the record would be a real tribute, but all of them together? It’s a pretty big deal for me personally.”
Amazing Mix Tape
The upcoming tribute album, which will drop on August 5, was produced by Dan Auerbach and David Ferguson—the same duo who helmed John’s 2020 album, Years. And from the sound of things, this wasn’t a Zoom-in-your-vocals affair. Each of the aforementioned artists, as well as Sierra Ferrell, Brent Cobb, Nathaniel Rateliff, Gillian Welch & David Rawlings, Brothers Osborne, and Del McCoury, recorded vocals at Auerbach’s Nashville studio.
“We weren’t trying to piddle around and make the normal tribute record,” says Dan Auerbach. “It had to be the best singers with the best songs and the best arrangements, and they all had to come into the studio. This wasn’t like, ‘Mail me the song, and we’ll put it together.’ Everybody had to come here and do their thing. I think it makes this record unique. And I don’t think most tribute records are done like this. I think that’s why it sounds like a cohesive album. It feels like an amazing mixtape.”
“I Just Came Home to Count the Memories” by Gillian Welch and David Rawlings was released today.
Money in the Bank
John Anderson has had one of the most unique—and successful—careers in country music. In fact, he’s had multiple careers, at least by country radio standards. And, hopefully someday soon, John will be inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame. But back to John’s career(s).
John was a musical force on the charts in both the early 1980s and the early 1990s. His distinctive voice helped usher in the neo-traditional movement of the 1980s with other like-minded artists, including George Strait and Keith Whitley.
John hit the top of the charts for the first time with 1982’s “Wild and Blue,” followed by 1983’s “Swingin’,” which earned the CMA Single of the Year award, and “Black Sheep.” In addition, John won the CMA Horizon Award for Best New Artist in 1983, besting the likes of Reba McEntire and Strait.
The late-’80s saw John’s radio success dry up. However, he caught his second “wind” in the early ’90s with a number of hits, including “Straight Tequila Night,” “Seminole Wind,” “Money in the Bank,” and more. The Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame inducted John in 2014.
‘A Tribute to John Anderson’ Track List
- “1959” – John Prine
- “Years” – Sierra Ferrell
- “Wild and Blue” – Brent Cobb
- “Low Dog Blues” – Nathaniel Rateliff
- “Mississippi Moon” – Eric Church
- “I Just Came Home to Count the Memories” – Gillian Welch & David Rawlings
- “Shoot Low Sheriff” – Tyler Childers
- “Seminole Wind” – Luke Combs
- “When It Comes to You” – Sturgill Simpson
- “You Can’t Judge A Book (By The Cover)” – Brothers Osborne
- “Would You Catch A Falling Star” Del McCoury feat. Sierra Hull
- “Straight Tequila Night” – Ashley McBryde
- “I’m Just an Old Chunk of Coal (But I’m Gonna Be a Diamond Some Day)” – Jamey Johnson